MANATEE — East Manatee County-based breakfast, brunch and lunch chain First Watch Restaurants has hired former Popeyes executive Mel Hope as CFO.
According to a press release, Hope brings decades of experience leading organizations such as Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen Inc. and startups.
Hope succeeds Paul Hineman, who worked for First Watch for four years.
As Popeyes’ CFO for 10 years, Hope oversaw mergers and acquisitions, financial reporting and technology conversions. Most recently, he was a partner, managing director and COO at Genesis Real Estate Advisers LLC.
“We are fortunate to have someone with his extensive experience and a track record of success leading fast-growing organizations like ours join our team,” says First Watch CEO Chris Tomasso in a statement. “We’re confident that Mel is an ideal addition to our executive team and I look forward to working alongside him as we maintain our aggressive growth.”
First Watch has more than 330 restaurants in 29 states, including more than 260 First Watch restaurants, 70 The Egg & I restaurants and one Bread & Company restaurant in Nashville.